The Future of Water

From the Middle East to South America to Los Angeles to Australia, water is becoming a central political and economic issue. This is because water, which is a basic human requirement, has become a scarce resource. However, some major MNCs, backed by multilateral institutions, have seized this opportunity to push through their agenda of treating water like any tradable commodity and making profit out of it. This is evident in the ongoing services negotiations at the WTO, as well as from the draft “Johannesburg Declaration” being discussed at the World Summit for Sustainable Development. Encapsulating the future of water, the Fortune magazine has noted, ” water promises to be to the 21st century what oil was to the 20th century: the precious commodity that determines wealth of nations”. In this context, it is important to note that there is a growing social movement worldwide to protect water as a common resource.

A few articles highlighting these issues can be accessed through the following sites
http://www.thenation.com/doc.mhtml?i=20020902&s=barlow 
http://www.thenation.com/doc.mhtml?i=20020902&s=hightower
http://www.vshiva.net/JalSwaraj.pdf
http://www.nytimes.com/2002/08/26/international/americas
/26WATE.html?ex=1031345294&ei=1&en=5c3e54c0f927f654